Real Housewives of Atlanta star “Mama Joyce” Jones has held little back when it comes to her criticism of daughter Kandi Burruss’ relationship with fiancé Todd Tucker. She spoke with ESSENCE.com to further explain her stance on the relationship, what kind of man she would choose for Kandi, and why she was "shocked" to hear former NFL star Chuck Smith call her daughter a “jump-off.”
ESSENCE.com: Season 6 has been eventful. How are you feeling about how you’re being portrayed?
“Mama Joyce” Jones: I was really not happy about it. I felt that I was misrepresented because I’m not that type of person. I just want people to know that my main thing is that I love my daughter and I know my daughter loves me more than anything. There’s nothing I won’t do for her. They were making it seem like I was more worried about her taking care of me, which is not true because I take care of myself. My daughter will give me anything I want but I’m not the kind of mother that sits back and keeps my hand out and I never have been.
ESSENCE.com: Will you get to a point where you can trust Kandi’s judgment in choosing Todd?
Joyce: Well, I just made up my mind that I was going to have to back off, for my health and our relationship. I’m just going to have to let her make her own decision, whether it’s good or bad, whether I’m right or wrong. If I’m right, I wont say anything but be there for her. If she’s right, I’ll be the first one to apologize. I’ll get on TV or whatever it takes to apologize.
ESSENCE.com: Are you and Todd in a better place?
Joyce: I haven’t seen him in a good while. I’ve never been angry with Todd, I just don’t feel that he’s the person that I would’ve chosen for my daughter.
ESSENCE.com: What do you say to people that say it doesn’t seem like anyone is good enough for Kandi in your eyes?
Joyce: That’s not true. Every mother thinks her child is the most precious thing in the world. I’m no different. It’s not that I don’t feel like nobody’s good enough for her; I just feel it should be someone that’s not there to take advantage of her, someone that’s got their own. One time she said, ‘Mom you look at a man as a paycheck.' No, I look at a man as a provider. My father had 14 children and we never went without. He was a provider. And that’s why I look at a man as a provider.
ESSENCE.com: What's your ideal man for Kandi?
Joyce: I would say a policeman that's a detective or a fireman that's a lieutenant or someone that has been on the job for a long time. I wouldn't mind if she met a working man that would be a good stepfather for Riley. If he had a good income, like say he made $60-$70,000 and he wasn’t the kind that was just there for her money and he really cared about her, I wouldn't mind.
ESSENCE.com: What did you think of Chuck Smith’s comments about Kandi on the show?
Joyce: He got on there and told the biggest lie he ever told. I was so shocked because I really liked Chuck. He was like a son to me when they were dating. I mean, his mother and father and myself all used to go out to dinners together. He took us out to Cirque du Soleil. I’ve even spent the night at Chuck’s house. Kandi had keys to his house. Would you let a jump offs mother keep your daughter over the weekend more that two times? Every time I saw him he would hug me like “Hey Ma, what’s up?” He bought me my first Louis Vuitton bag. He was so in love with Kandi he would call me even after she quit him. I don’t know what made him say that. I mean it was 20 years ago. I don’t know whether he was trying to get on the show or what but I’m so disappointed in him.
What do you think of Mama Joyce’s stance on Kandi and Todd’s relationship?